Newly minted UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks erased the bad memories of his controversial UFC 167 split decision loss to former longtime champion Georges St. Pierre by defeating a game “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler for the belt at UFC 171 on March 15.
Hendricks now has the crown that he’s worked so hard to get, but it was not without a grave price. News broke last week that “Bigg Rigg” would be going under the knife for a torn biceps.
Today, Hendricks underwent that surgery, Tweeting a photo of himself directly after the operation (and apparently on a high dose of pain medication):
— Johny Hendricks (@JohnyHendricks) March 24, 2014
Hendricks nearly pulled out of the pivotal UFC 171 main event a week-and-a-half before the fight, but chose to push through the pain only to have it worsen. With a long list of top-level welterweights like Rory MacDonald, Tyron Woodley, Hector Lombard, and Nick Diaz all clamoring for a shot at his belt, the champ will now wait four weeks and start four another weeks of rehabilitation. He’ll hopefully be back to training in around two months, but nothing is confirmed as of yet.
The injury couldn’t have come at a worse time for “Bigg Rigg.” The UFC needs all the big fights it can muster, and even though Hendricks isn’t exactly a huge pay-per-view draw, there are at least some potentially exciting fights readily available for him.
He’d better return to full health before he comes back, because he’ll undoubtedly be jumping right into shark-infested waters. Which hungry contender will emerge to the front of the pack in the meantime?